Last year, 68.2% of people aged over 65 and 44% in the at risk groups were vaccinated against flu in Lewisham, compared with the national averages of 73.4% and 51.3%.
Flu can be a very serious illness for certain groups of people. I would therefore encourage all those who are over the age of 65 or in on the 'at risk' groups to visit their surgery and get vaccinated.
The NHS has a very successful seasonal flu programme, but the Department of Health is looking to improve uptake rates, particularly in those who are under 65 years of age but have clinical conditions which put them more at risk from the effects of flu. Uptake currently stands at 51.3%, but the DoH hopes to increase this to 75%.
Westminster Flu Day is sponsored by the ABPI Vaccine Group and supported by the DoH as a way of highlighting the importance of flu vaccination.
Parliamentarians who would not be eligible for a free seasonal flu vaccine on the NHS made a £10 donation to the Disasters Emergency Committee.